I’ve lost all perspective on the world. The world is the Rally. The Rally is the world, or something like that. This week, hours and hours and hours went to keeping the Rally on the rails, and trying to make it be all it can be. I hope I’ve done okay – it’s all just anxiety right now. Today’s the last day before we leave. We all went to packing day, and… wait, have I told you how this works? The riders are supported on this odyssey by the crew. Food crew, Wellness crew, Road Support and (most important for this story) The Rustlers.
Every rider gets two rubbermaid bins – not super big ones. You put everything in them that you’ll need for the week – your clothes, tent, chair, spare inner tubes, purse, yarn… and they move it from city to city. Every morning we load our two bins up and take them to the trucks, and the rustlers drive them to the next city, and decant all the bins onto the campground. We pick up our bins, go set up our tents, do whatever, and then in the morning we pack it all back into the bins, trot (drag, limp) the bins back over to the trucks – repeat. The thing is that we can’t do this the morning of departure. It’s way too complicated to check everyone in, assign them bins… we’d have to get there before dawn. (Remember, there’s 300 cyclists.) So the day before departure is packing day. You show up, check in, get your jerseys for the day or the week, depending on how long you’re riding, and you get bins and put all your stuff in, and put it on a truck and then…
Then the Rustlers have your stuff, and you don’t. I find it really stressful. I can’t give them my knitting because then I can’t knit, but I can’t keep my knitting unless I can carry it on my bike the next day, because I won’t have access to those bins until I arrive in Port Hope tomorrow night. (Apparently that I am Co-Chair means very little in terms of bin access. The Rustlers are fierce. Some of them are even knitters and I still couldn’t budge anyone, though I didn’t try that hard. They’ve got a system.) Essentially, you can only keep the things that you can fit in your jersey pockets. (I kept more knitting than I should have. I’m stressed. Yarn makes me feel better. I’ll figure it out tomorrow.)
I came home and finished a pair of socks –
Pattern forthcoming, when I have time to do it… yarn is Ridley Sock Yarn from Sea Turtle Fiber Arts (I think the colourway was called “Imagine”) I said it when I started knitting with this yarn, and I’ll say it again, I love this sock yarn. Durable, soft, super cozy. I’m a fan. I started a new pair of socks this week too – these ones to accompany me on my trip, since I knew the other ones would be finished soon. (No point in knitting taking up room if it won’t last the trip.)
This one is Electron Sock (80% merino/ 20% nylon) from Elemental Fiberworks in “Ring Nebula” (I think it looks rainbowish.) I also freaked out and put an extra skein in my packing, because I got nervous that I’d (like always) suddenly churn out much more knitting than usual, and be underyarned in a campground somewhere. The truth is that it’s not really likely, considering that it’s hours and hours a day on my bike (and I feel like if I instagrammed a yarn emergency one of you would help me) but you can’t be too careful.
I’m off to bed soon, because how much sleep you need to do this can’t be understated, but I thought I’d do as many Karmic Balancing gifts as I could before running out of time. I won’t get through them all, some will have to wait until we’re back, but here goes!
Caitlin wrote the sweetest note about finally being in a position to give, and give she did, three lovely offerings from her stash and hands. Handspun SweetGeorgia Yarns BFL/silk (January 2014 club colorway ‘Night Owl’). Semi-woolen spun, 4 oz/about 200 yards, that will be going to live with Jess D.
Three skeins of Imperial Yarn Erin, one each of the Natural, Pearl Grey, and Quail colorways, Caitlin will send that to Heather B.
And last, but certainly not least two skeins of handspun natural fiber; lighter grey is Jacob, and darker is Corriedale. 4 oz/about 200 yards each for Diana Z, who is not a spinner, and I’m glad, because this one of the only ways she’ll get to enjoy how lovely it is to knit with handspun.
Robin Hunter, charmer that she is, has donated a free pattern for TEN knitters.
I have no idea how on earth they are going to choose from the lovelies in her shop, but good luck to Margaret G, Sarah M, Marcie R, Camb F, Miriam F, Beth D. Harriet B, Cheryl R, Kate D, Angela D and Beth D.
Gina has three beautiful things to share, and writes about her luck, and how she’d like to pass the love on. Isager Strik Spinni (Wool 1): 2 skeins, lace weight, 100% wool, colorway Gray 2S that she’ll be sending to Sarah J.
Twisted Fiber Art Opulent Striping: 2 skeins, DK weight, 50/50 silk/merino, colorway Mirage (caked up, no longer in skein) for Kathleen W.